TTF Media Release
Thursday 20 May 2021
VIC BUDGET HELPING TO PLUG THE VICTORIAN VISITOR DEFICIT WHILE INTERNATIONAL BORDER REMAINS CLOSED
The nation’s peak body for the tourism, transport and aviation sectors said today’s Victorian Budget provides critical short-term support for the industry to survive and recover but that longer term funding and certainty from all levels of government was still sorely needed.
Tourism and Transport Forum (TTF) CEO Margy Osmond said that a recently announced new $260 million package to help revitalise the struggling Melbourne CBD, significant new rail infrastructure funding, $85 million for a new skills body, ongoing marketing and business event support and $6 million investment in national parks would all help.
“After prolonged lockdowns and lingering low travel confidence and ongoing domestic and international travel uncertainty, the Victorian tourism sector is still fighting for survival each and every day,” TTF CEO Margy Osmond said.
“Ongoing state support for our industry in Victoria is critical as Australia remains at real risk of becoming one of the only major countries without a comprehensive and well understood timeframe for re-opening to the global economy.
“Victoria has still been losing almost $1 billion per month from the lack of international tourism spend, which is resulting in sustained job losses and over $6 billion in lost wages over the course of 2020 and with no clear end yet in sight.
“Today’s Budget contains a range of specific and targeted measures for our sector which will help go some way to stem the ongoing flow of lost visitation, lost jobs and struggling businesses large and small across the State.
“While TTF would have liked to have seen a longer-term four year funding cycle for Visit Victoria in line with new longer funding cycles for the Melbourne Convention Bureau and Business Events Victoria, we welcome the additional $55 million in funding over two years for that critical demand driving agency.
“It will go some way to help to plug the Victorian visitor deficit with critical domestic demand while international demand, outside a small number from New Zealand, remains indefinitely stalled.”
TTF also welcomed economy boosting support measures which the industry had long been pushing for like the major $2.3 billion investment in the Victorian public transport network including $986 million to build 25 brand‐new, modern, X’Trapolis 2.0 trains and supporting infrastructure for the metropolitan network.
“Significant public transport spending is critical at this juncture and will set up Victoria well for the years ahead when the States’ visitor economy eventually returns to full strength, which with the ongoing right support, it will.”
Contact: TTF Manager Policy, Media and Government Relations Lindsay Hermes email@example.com 0418 948 447